- Egypt rights center raided, 2 Mubaraks acquitted
- New Mexico Supreme Court rules same-sex marriage constitutional
- Blame Bush: 5 years later, that’s still the mantra, pollsters find
- Dutch prostitutes demand same retirement benefits as soccer stars
- John McCain to Harry Reid: I’ll ‘kick the crap’ out of you
- Dogs that talk: Researchers seek $10K for ‘No More Woof’ technology
- 1,000 firefighters called to battle stubborn Big Sur wildfire
- Black Friday brouhaha: Millions of Target shoppers hit by credit card theft
- Britain orders airplane to rescue citizens from violent South Sudan
- Mega Millions winner emerges as Georgia mom, in ‘disbelief’
Gadhafi could wage protracted civil war
Analysts say Libya’s opposition too weak
Question of the Day
Col. Moammar Gadhafi’s well-equipped but poorly trained security forces can wage a protracted battle against rebel fighters, allowing the beleaguered Libyan leader to cling to power for months, according to analysts and former Libyan officials.
“If things go the way they are, I think he could last for more than a month, a few months. That would be disastrous for the rest of Libya,” said Mohamed Yousef Al-Megariaf, a critic of the regime who quit his post as Libya’s ambassador to India in 1980.
“The reason he is hanging on is not because he is popular, but because of the number of troops who belong to his tribe, the volume of his weapons and his willingness to inflict an unimaginable degree of suffering on the Libyan people,” he added.
Pro-Gadhafi forces have escalated their offensive in recent days in a seesaw struggle with rebel troops. Over the weekend, residents reported pitched battles in rebel-controlled cities, including Zawiya, Ras Lanuf and Misurata. The regime also conducted airstrikes on Brega and outside Ajdabiya.
On Sunday, rebels in Misurata beat back the fiercest attack so far by Gadhafi forces trying to retake the town. At least 18 people died in the fighting, a doctor told reporters.
However, rebels retreated on Sunday from Bin Jawad on the road to Surt, Col. Gadhafi’s hometown and a prize that the rebels are keen to capture.
Brega, Zawiya and Ras Lanuf have key oil terminals, and the provisional rebel government pledged Sunday to honor all oil contracts. Libya’s proven oil reserves are estimated at 43.7 billion barrels, the ninth-largest amount in the world, according to Oil and Gas Journal.
Libya’s security apparatus is broadly divided into four parts: the regular armed forces, security forces, the police, and revolutionary committees or militias. Since the outbreak of anti-government protests last month, the regime also has relied on Libyan-trained African mercenaries from Chad, Mali, Niger and Algeria to attack unarmed civilians.
The Gadhafi regime has dipped into Libya’s significant oil revenue to fund these mercenaries, who initially were sent to fight in other parts of Africa.
“This unit is receiving mercenaries who are coming from Niger,” he said.
© Copyright 2013 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.
About the Author
Ashish Kumar Sen is a reporter covering foreign policy and international developments for The Washington Times.
Prior to joining The Times, Mr. Sen worked for publications in Asia and the Middle East. His work has appeared in a number of publications and online news sites including the British Broadcasting Corp., Asia Times Online and Outlook magazine.
- U.S. teacher shot dead in Benghazi after al Qaeda call for violence
- Syria nightmare: Fresh fears about al Qaeda fighters there returning home as sleeper terrorists
- Iran official: Sanctions 'utterly failed' to stop nuclear program
- China accuses Japan of raising tensions over new air defense zone
- Joe Biden meets Xi Jinping in China to try to defuse tensions on air defense zone
By Michael P. Orsi
- Calling prison term disparities unfair, Obama commutes sentences for 8 crack offenders
- Gov't wasted $30 billion on 'pillownauts,' crystal goblets -- buying human urine!
- Homeland Security helps smuggle illegal immigrant children into the U.S.
- Bill Gates: The Secret Santa disguised as a 'friendly fellow' on Reddit
- Obamacare 'pajamas boy' gets roundly mocked
- Duck Dynasty Phil Robertson suspended indefinitely for gay quip
- Armed response, not restrictive gun laws, brought swift end to school shooting
- U.S. Army mulls wiping out memory of Robert E. Lee, 'Stonewall' Jackson
- Special ops vets slam military benefit cuts
- BOLTON: Nero in the White House
Independent voices from the The Washington Times Communities
Paul Rondeau exposes the propaganda, media tricks, and government policies that undermine our families, faith, freedom…and even life itself
Implement these actionable tips, how-to’s and best practices in 10 minutes or less to leverage online communications and technology for brand, business and career development.
The world impacts us. What happens in our towns, cities, states, country and on this planet makes a difference to us.
Top 10 handguns in the U.S.
Extraordinary day at Redskins Park
White House pets gone wild!
Let it snow